Publications by authors named "Giovanna Maresca"

11 Publications

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The RESOLUTE consortium: unlocking SLC transporters for drug discovery.

Authors:
Giulio Superti-Furga Daniel Lackner Tabea Wiedmer Alvaro Ingles-Prieto Barbara Barbosa Enrico Girardi Ulrich Goldmann Bettina Gürtl Kristaps Klavins Christoph Klimek Sabrina Lindinger Eva Liñeiro-Retes André C Müller Svenja Onstein Gregor Redinger Daniela Reil Vitaly Sedlyarov Gernot Wolf Matthew Crawford Robert Everley David Hepworth Shenping Liu Stephen Noell Mary Piotrowski Robert Stanton Hui Zhang Salvatore Corallino Andrea Faedo Maria Insidioso Giovanna Maresca Loredana Redaelli Francesca Sassone Lia Scarabottolo Michela Stucchi Paola Tarroni Sara Tremolada Helena Batoulis Andreas Becker Eckhard Bender Yung-Ning Chang Alexander Ehrmann Anke Müller-Fahrnow Vera Pütter Diana Zindel Bradford Hamilton Martin Lenter Diana Santacruz Coralie Viollet Charles Whitehurst Kai Johnsson Philipp Leippe Birgit Baumgarten Lena Chang Yvonne Ibig Martin Pfeifer Jürgen Reinhardt Julian Schönbett Paul Selzer Klaus Seuwen Charles Bettembourg Bruno Biton Jörg Czech Hélène de Foucauld Michel Didier Thomas Licher Vincent Mikol Antje Pommereau Frédéric Puech Veeranagouda Yaligara Aled Edwards Brandon J Bongers Laura H Heitman Ad P IJzerman Huub J Sijben Gerard J P van Westen Justine Grixti Douglas B Kell Farah Mughal Neil Swainston Marina Wright-Muelas Tina Bohstedt Nicola Burgess-Brown Liz Carpenter Katharina Dürr Jesper Hansen Andreea Scacioc Giulia Banci Claire Colas Daniela Digles Gerhard Ecker Barbara Füzi Viktoria Gamsjäger Melanie Grandits Riccardo Martini Florentina Troger Patrick Altermatt Cédric Doucerain Franz Dürrenberger Vania Manolova Anna-Lena Steck Hanna Sundström Maria Wilhelm Claire M Steppan

Nat Rev Drug Discov 2020 07;19(7):429-430

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/d41573-020-00056-6DOI Listing
July 2020

Down-regulation of the Lamin A/C in neuroblastoma triggers the expansion of tumor initiating cells.

Oncotarget 2015 Oct;6(32):32821-40

Institute of Cell Biology and Neurobiology-CNR, Monterotondo, Rome, Italy.

Tumor-initiating cells constitute a population within a tumor mass that shares properties with normal stem cells and is considered responsible for therapy failure in many cancers. We have previously demonstrated that knockdown of the nuclear envelope component Lamin A/C in human neuroblastoma cells inhibits retinoic acid-mediated differentiation and results in a more aggressive phenotype. In addition, Lamin A/C is often lost in advanced tumors and changes in the nuclear envelope composition occur during tumor progression. Based on our previous data and considering that Lamin A/C is expressed in differentiated tissues, we hypothesize that the lack of Lamin A/C could predispose cells toward a stem-like phenotype, thus influencing the development of tumor-initiating cells in neuroblastoma. This paper demonstrates that knockdown of Lamin A/C triggers the development of a tumor-initiating cell population with self-renewing features in human neuroblastoma cells. We also demonstrates that the development of TICs is due to an increased expression of MYCN gene and that in neuroblastoma exists an inverse relationship between LMNA and MYCN expression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.5104DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4741732PMC
October 2015

LMNA knock-down affects differentiation and progression of human neuroblastoma cells.

PLoS One 2012 26;7(9):e45513. Epub 2012 Sep 26.

CNR-Institute of Cell Biology and Neurobiology, Santa Lucia Foundation-IRCCS, Rome, Italy.

Background: Neuroblastoma (NB) is one of the most aggressive tumors that occur in childhood. Although genes, such as MYCN, have been shown to be involved in the aggressiveness of the disease, the identification of new biological markers is still desirable. The induction of differentiation is one of the strategies used in the treatment of neuroblastoma. A-type lamins are components of the nuclear lamina and are involved in differentiation. We studied the role of Lamin A/C in the differentiation and progression of neuroblastoma.

Methodology/principal Findings: Knock-down of Lamin A/C (LMNA-KD) in neuroblastoma cells blocked retinoic acid-induced differentiation, preventing neurites outgrowth and the expression of neural markers. The genome-wide gene-expression profile and the proteomic analysis of LMNA-KD cells confirmed the inhibition of differentiation and demonstrated an increase of aggressiveness-related genes and molecules resulting in augmented migration/invasion, and increasing the drug resistance of the cells. The more aggressive phenotype acquired by LMNA-KD cells was also maintained in vivo after injection into nude mice. A preliminary immunohistochemistry analysis of Lamin A/C expression in nine primary stages human NB indicated that this protein is poorly expressed in most of these cases.

Conclusions/significance: We demonstrated for the first time in neuroblastoma cells that Lamin A/C plays a central role in the differentiation, and that the loss of this protein gave rise to a more aggressive tumor phenotype.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0045513PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3458895PMC
April 2013

Contribution of serine racemase/d-serine pathway to neuronal apoptosis.

Aging Cell 2012 Aug 5;11(4):588-98. Epub 2012 Jun 5.

Istituto di Biologia Cellulare e Neurobiologia, CNR, Roma, Italy.

Recent data indicate that age-related N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) transmission impairment is correlated with the reduction in serine racemase (SR) expression and d-serine content. As apoptosis is associated with several diseases and conditions that generally occur with age, we investigated the modulation of SR/d-serine pathway during neuronal apoptosis and its impact on survival. We found that in cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs), undergoing apoptosis SR/d-serine pathway is crucially regulated. In the early phase of apoptosis, the expression of SR is reduced, both at the protein and RNA level through pathways, upstream of caspase activation, involving ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) and c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNKs). Forced expression of SR, together with treatment with NMDA and d-serine, blocks neuronal death, whereas pharmacological inhibition and Sh-RNA-mediated suppression of endogenous SR exacerbate neuronal death. In the late phase of apoptosis, the increased expression of SR contribute to the last, NMDAR-mediated, wave of cell death. These findings are relevant to our understanding of neuronal apoptosis and NMDAR activity regulation, raising further questions as to the role of SR/d-serine in those neuro-pathophysiological processes, such as aging and neurodegenerative diseases characterized by a convergence of apoptotic mechanisms and NMDAR dysfunction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1474-9726.2012.00822.xDOI Listing
August 2012

CPTH6, a thiazole derivative, induces histone hypoacetylation and apoptosis in human leukemia cells.

Clin Cancer Res 2012 Jan 8;18(2):475-86. Epub 2011 Nov 8.

Experimental Chemotherapy Laboratory, Regina Elena National Cancer Institute, Via delle Messi d'Oro 156, 00158 Rome, Italy.

Purpose: We previously identified novel thiazole derivatives able to reduce histone acetylation and histone acetyltransferase (HAT) activity in yeast. Among these compounds, 3-methylcyclopentylidene-[4-(4'-chlorophenyl)thiazol-2-yl]hydrazone (CPTH6) has been selected and used throughout this study.

Experimental Design: The effect of CPTH6 on histone acetylation, cell viability and differentiation, cell-cycle distribution, and apoptosis in a panel of acute myeloid leukemia and solid tumor cell lines has been evaluated.

Results: Here, we showed that CPTH6 leads to an inhibition of Gcn5 and pCAF HAT activity. Moreover, it inhibits H3/H4 histones and α-tubulin acetylation of a panel of leukemia cell lines. Concentration- and time-dependent inhibition of cell viability, paralleled by accumulation of cells in the G(0)/G(1) phase and depletion from the S/G(2)M phases, was observed. The role of mitochondrial pathway on CPTH6-induced apoptosis was shown, being a decrease of mitochondrial membrane potential and the release of cytochrome c, from mitochondria to cytosol, induced by CPTH6. Also the involvement of Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL on CPTH6-induced apoptosis was found after overexpression of the two proteins in leukemia cells. Solid tumor cell lines from several origins were shown to be differently sensitive to CPTH6 treatment in terms of cell viability, and a correlation between the inhibitory efficacy on H3/H4 histones acetylation and cytotoxicity was found. Differentiating effect on leukemia and neuroblastoma cell lines was also induced by CPTH6.

Conclusions: These results make CPTH6 a suitable tool for discovery of molecular targets of HAT and, potentially, for the development of new anticancer therapies, which warrants further investigations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-11-0579DOI Listing
January 2012

Ago1 and Ago2 differentially affect cell proliferation, motility and apoptosis when overexpressed in SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells.

FEBS Lett 2011 Oct 11;585(19):2965-71. Epub 2011 Aug 11.

Department of Cellular Biotechnology and Hematology, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy.

Argonaute are a conserved class of proteins central to the microRNA pathway. We have highlighted a novel and non-redundant function of Ago1 versus Ago2; the two core factors of the miRNA-associated RISC complex. Stable overexpression of Ago1 in neuroblastoma cells causes the cell cycle to slow down, a decrease in cellular motility and a stronger apoptotic response upon UV irradiation. These effects, together with a significant increase in p53 levels, suggest that Ago1 may act as a tumor-suppressor factor, a function also supported by GEO Profiles microarrays that inversely correlate Ago1 expression levels with cell proliferation rates.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.febslet.2011.08.003DOI Listing
October 2011

Temozolomide induced c-Myc-mediated apoptosis via Akt signalling in MGMT expressing glioblastoma cells.

Int J Radiat Biol 2011 May 15;87(5):518-33. Epub 2011 Mar 15.

Centro Ricerca S. Pietro, Fatebenefratelli Hospital, Via Cassia 600, Rome, Italy.

Purpose: We investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the cytotoxic effect of Temozolomide (TMZ) in both O(6)-methylguanine-DNA methyl transferase (MGMT) depleted as well as undepleted glioblastoma cell lines. Since TMZ is used in clinics in combination with radiotherapy, we also studied the effects of TMZ in combination with ionising radiation (IR).

Methods: Cell colony-forming ability was measured using a clonogenic assay. Cell cycle analysis and apoptosis were evaluated by Flow Cytometry (FCM). Proteins involved in cell cycle control were detected by Western blot and co-immunoprecipitation assays.

Results: Our data showed that TMZ, independent of MGMT expression, inhibited glioblastoma cell growth via an irreversible G(2) block in MGMT depleted cells or the induction of apoptosis in MGMT normal expressing cells. When TMZ was administered in combination with IR, apoptosis was greater than observed with either agent separately. This TMZ-induced apoptosis in the MGMT expressing cells occurred through Akt/Glycogen-Synthase-Kinase-3ß (GSK3ß) signalling and was mediated by Myelocytomatosis (c-Myc) oncoprotein. Indeed, TMZ phosphorylated/activated Akt led to phosphorylation/inactivation of GSK3ß which resulted in the stabilisation of c-Myc protein and subsequent modulation of the c-Myc target genes involved in the apoptotic processes.

Conclusion: C-Myc expression could be considered a good indicator of TMZ effectiveness.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/09553002.2011.556173DOI Listing
May 2011

PC4/Tis7/IFRD1 stimulates skeletal muscle regeneration and is involved in myoblast differentiation as a regulator of MyoD and NF-kappaB.

J Biol Chem 2011 Feb 2;286(7):5691-707. Epub 2010 Dec 2.

Istituto di Neurobiologia e Medicina Molecolare, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Fondazione S Lucia, Via del Fosso di Fiorano 64, 00143 Rome, Italy.

In skeletal muscle cells, the PC4 (Tis7/Ifrd1) protein is known to function as a coactivator of MyoD by promoting the transcriptional activity of myocyte enhancer factor 2C (MEF2C). In this study, we show that up-regulation of PC4 in vivo in adult muscle significantly potentiates injury-induced regeneration by enhancing myogenesis. Conversely, we observe that PC4 silencing in myoblasts causes delayed exit from the cell cycle, accompanied by delayed differentiation, and we show that such an effect is MyoD-dependent. We provide evidence revealing a novel mechanism underlying the promyogenic actions of PC4, by which PC4 functions as a negative regulator of NF-κB, known to inhibit MyoD expression post-transcriptionally. In fact, up-regulation of PC4 in primary myoblasts induces the deacetylation, and hence the inactivation and nuclear export of NF-κB p65, in concomitance with induction of MyoD expression. On the contrary, PC4 silencing in myoblasts induces the acetylation and nuclear import of p65, in parallel with a decrease of MyoD levels. We also observe that PC4 potentiates the inhibition of NF-κB transcriptional activity mediated by histone deacetylases and that PC4 is able to form trimolecular complexes with p65 and HDAC3. This suggests that PC4 stimulates deacetylation of p65 by favoring the recruitment of HDAC3 to p65. As a whole, these results indicate that PC4 plays a role in muscle differentiation by controlling the MyoD pathway through multiple mechanisms, and as such, it positively regulates regenerative myogenesis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M110.162842DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3037682PMC
February 2011

MYC prevents apoptosis and enhances endoreduplication induced by paclitaxel.

PLoS One 2009 6;4(5):e5442. Epub 2009 May 6.

Department of Pharmacology, University of Milan, Milan, Italy.

Background: The role of the MYC oncogene in the apoptotic pathways is not fully understood. MYC has been reported to protect cells from apoptosis activation but also to sensitize cells to apoptotic stimuli. We have previously demonstrated that the down-regulation of Myc protein activates apoptosis in melanoma cells and increases the susceptibility of cells to various antitumoral treatments. Beyond the well-known role in the G1-->S transition, MYC is also involved in the G2-M cell cycle phases regulation.

Methodology/principal Findings: In this study we have investigated how MYC could influence cell survival signalling during G2 and M phases. We used the microtubules damaging agent paclitaxel (PTX), to arrest the cells in the M phase, in a p53 mutated melanoma cell line with modulated Myc level and activity. An overexpression of Myc protein is able to increase endoreduplication favoring the survival of cells exposed to antimitotic poisoning. The PTX-induced endoreduplication is associated in Myc overexpressing cells with a reduced expression of MAD2, essential component of the molecular core of the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC), indicating an impairment of this checkpoint. In addition, for the first time we have localized Myc protein at the spindle poles (centrosomes) during pro-metaphase in different cell lines.

Conclusions: The presence of Myc at the poles during the prometaphase could be necessary for the Myc-mediated attenuation of the SAC and the subsequent induction of endoreduplication. In addition, our data strongly suggest that the use of taxane in antitumor therapeutic strategies should be rationally based on the molecular profile of the individual tumor by specifically analyzing Myc expression levels.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0005442PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2673584PMC
June 2009

A functional G300S variant of the cysteinyl leukotriene 1 receptor is associated with atopy in a Tristan da Cunha isolate.

Pharmacogenet Genomics 2007 Jul;17(7):539-49

Laboratory Medicine, Banting Institute, Department of Pharmacology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Atopy is a well-defined immune phenotype that is reported to be a risk factor for asthma. Among the many loci that contribute to a genetic predisposition to asthma, the cysteinyl leukotriene receptor genes and their variants have been important subjects of study because they are functionally and pharmacologically implicated in the atopy phenotype affecting many asthma subjects. Moreover, the product of cysteinyl-leukotriene 1 receptor gene (CysLT1), located at Xq13.2, is targeted by LT receptor antagonists. In our earlier association study, the M201V variant of the cysteinyl-leukotriene 2 receptor gene (CysLT2), located at 13q14, was implicated in atopic asthma. Here we report the screening of the coding region of the CysLT1, gene in the highly asthmatic Tristan da Cunha population. In this population, we discovered a CysLT1 G300S variant that is carried with a significantly higher frequency in atopics and asthmatics from the Tristan da Cunha population. Furthermore, we report the asthma independent association of the CysLT1 G300S variant with atopy. Subsequently, we compared the changes conferred by each SNP on CysLT function. The CysLT1 300S receptor interacts with LTD4 with significantly greater potency. For the 300S variant, a statistically significant decrease in the effector concentration for half-maximum response (EC50) for intracellular Ca flux and total InsP generation is observed. Other aspects of the receptor function and activity, such as desensitization, pharmacologic profile in response to montelukast, and cellular localization, are unchanged. These in vitro analyses provide evidence that the 300S CysLT1 variant, found more commonly in atopics in the Tristan da Cunha population, encodes a functionally more sensitive variant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/FPC.0b013e328012d0bfDOI Listing
July 2007

Stabilization of cellular mRNAs and up-regulation of proteins by oligoribonucleotides homologous to the Bcl2 adenine-uridine rich element motif.

Mol Pharmacol 2007 Feb 31;71(2):531-8. Epub 2006 Oct 31.

Department of Pharmacology, University of Milan, Via Vanvitelli 32, 20129 Milan, Italy.

Adenine-uridine rich elements (AREs) play an important role in modulating mRNA stability, being the target site of many ARE-binding proteins (AUBPs) that are involved in the decay process. Three 26-mer 2'-O-methyl oligoribonucleotides (ORNs) homologous to the core region of ARE of bcl2 mRNA have been studied for decoy-aptamer activity in UV cross-linking assays. Sense-oriented ORNs competed with the ARE motif for the interaction with both destabilizing and stabilizing AUBPs in cell-free systems and in cell lines. Moreover, ORNs induced mRNA stabilization and up-regulated both Bcl2 mRNA and protein levels in the cells. Bcl2 ORNs stabilized other ARE-containing transcripts and up-regulated their expression. These results indicate that Bcl2 ORNs compete for AUBP-ARE interactions independently of ARE class and suggest that in the cell, the default labile status of ARE-containing mRNAs depends on the combined interaction of such transcripts with destabilizing AUBPs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1124/mol.106.029041DOI Listing
February 2007